In Martyr's Day, the UAE commemorates the first martyr in the history of the country on November 30, 1971. The martyr Salem Suhail Khamis, who sacrificed himself just two days before the declaration of Statehood, defending Greater Tunb, one of three islands occupied by Iran. He set an example for next generations and proved that what this land holds deserves to be defended and scarified for.

When we commemorate our martyrs both in past history, or those who were fighting in Yemen, we celebrate a day of national pride. Nothing can be compared to self-sacrifice for one's motherland.

Since we were kids, we were taught patriotism and loyalty. But when we heard the stories of our martyrs who lost their lives in Yemen, our minds and hearts learned the true meaning of both.

We used to think that citizenship is to carry your country's passport and cultural identity, but the stories of the martyrs taught us that true citizenship is being ready to put your life on the line for your country.

Our brave heroes taught us a lesson, to pass to our children, leaving behind a huge legacy of genuine patriotism. We will always remember their sacrifices with much appreciation and pride.

In his speech on the occasion of Martyr's Day, HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the UAE, said "Nations are proud of the heroism of their sons; nations are immortalized by their sacrifices. Sacrifices empower and make present and future generations proud." Martyr's Day is proof that the UAE will not forget its brave sons and that their families will remain in the heart of the UAE and its leadership and will not be forgotten.

The sacrifices of the martyrs coming from different corners of the country prove that the UAE is united and our national identity is strong at a time when the national identities of many countries are threatened. In the Yemen arena, the Emirati soldiers showed they were ready to make sacrifices to the homeland and the dignity.

The memory of the martyrs of duty will always be the torch of light in our civilized journey towards the future. States will live by the sacrifices of their people. We will not forget every one who spilled a drop of blood in order to defend the homeland's security. The world has known that the people of the UAE can carry their flag proudly, and defend it fervently.